2011 Community Report - Stark County Board of Developmental
O U R
C O M M U N I T Y
B E T T E R
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C O M M U N I T Y
R E P O R T
Stark County Board of
Stark County Board of
The Board was created by Ohio Law in 1967
to provide services to people with developmental
disabilities. The name of the Board changed from
the Board of Mental Retardation and Developmental
Disabilities (MRDD) to the Board of Developmental
Disabilities in 2009.
Board selection and eligibility
Five members of the Board are appointed by the
Board of Stark County Commissioners and two members are selected by the Judge of Probate Court. At
least two of the members appointed by the county
commissioners must be parents of an individual with
mental retardation or developmental disabilities
receiving Board services. Of the two members
appointed by the probate judge, at least one must
be a member of the family of an individual eligible
for services. All board members serve without pay.
The Stark County Board of Developmental Disabilities meets on the third Saturday of the month, except
for July and November in the Multi-Purpose room at
the Whipple-Dale Center. Meetings begin at 10:30
a.m. and are open to the public.
Refer to www.starkdd.org for updated schedules.
For more than 40 years, Stark DD has been a community partner that
medical professionals, educators and social service agencies turn
to when our most vulnerable citizens and their families are in need
of life-long supports and services. We continue our pursuit of new
and inventive management strategies that allow the Board to remain
an efficient and responsive community partner. By using bold thinking
and strategic decision making, Stark DD has streamlined the budget,
leveraged new technology to ensure effective communications, and
charted a course with our 3 year strategic plan that will allow the
Board to keep offering high quality services at no cost to participants
or their families. We are honored to be able to share with the
citizens of Stark County some of our 2011 accomplishments.
Dear Stark County Residents,
To be the support that
connects individuals and families
with the services they need.
A GLOSSARY OF TERMS
DD: Developmental Disabilities. Conditions that may impair
physical or intellectual/cognitive functions or behavior, and
occur before a person is age 22.
Like other public organizations, Stark DD has
worked hard to maximize taxpayers’ dollars, while
offering vital services to our participants.
Through grant programs, maximizing federal Medicaid dollars and implementing more than $2.5 million
in cost saving reductions, we are stretching local taxpayer dollars and trying to do more with less.
The Stark County Board of Developmental Disabilities’ expenditures in our preliminary 2013 budget
mirror the expenditures that were reported in 2010.
By using bold thinking and strategic decision making,
we were able to keep expenditures at 2010 levels and
maintain the services more than 3,300 Stark County
residents depend on. In fact, we have successfully
eliminated waiting lists for early intervention and adult
services, offered 10 Individual Option waivers directly
from the waiting list, embedded three classrooms into
public schools, implemented and expanded a subcontracting initiative that enhances choice for a person
coming into adult services, expanded supportive
employment opportunities so that over 43% of adults
served work in the community, implemented a new
Health Matters curriculum that focuses on wellness for
people with disabilities, expanded self-advocacy efforts
by establishing three People First Chapters, and continued to use local tax dollars as a last resort, all while
seeing our average daily enrollment increase.
With continuous planning, resourceful thinking
and strategic decision making, Stark DD will continue
streamlining the budget while providing the vital,
high-quality services Stark County’s residents and
families depend on.
If the money we have today is all we
may have for the next ten years, how do
we adapt to meet the needs of the new
person entering the system?
Waivers help families
What is the County Board’s
toward a waiver?
A County Board Service and
Support Administrator (SSA)
advises individuals with DD
and their caregivers on applying for Medicaid and requesting a waiver. At that point, the
individual’s name is added to
the waiting list. A waiver
cannot be offered until funding
is available. The County Board
must fund approximately 40%
of each waiver for the lifetime
of each waiver granted to
individuals in the county.
The federal government pays
the remaining 60%.
If eligible, does someone get
a waiver immediately?
No, because the funding,
both federally and locally,
must be available to pay for
the waiver services. For a
County Board, this means
budgeting each year for the
resources that can be designated to pay the waiver
“match” (40%). Until then,
individuals’ names remain
on the waiting list.
There are a few situations
that will allow individuals
to be considered for waiver
enrollment before others
on the waiting list. An
Emergency is a situation
that creates a risk of substantial self harm or harm to
others if action is not taken in
30 days. In these situations,
Stark DD makes every effort
to offer a waiver; finding the
supporting funds from somewhere else in its budget.
Priority situations are
created when individuals
have caregivers older than
60 or have intense needs.
In Stark County,
as of May 2012,
there were 809
the Level One
Waiting List, and
1,439 individuals on the IO
W H AT I S A WA I V E R ?
The Medicaid Waiver services administered by
the Ohio DD system provide certain Ohio citizens
the support that they need for day services and
residential supports. Currently there are two waivers
for persons with DD in Ohio; the Level One (L1)
waiver and the Individual Options (IO) waiver.
These waivers allow a limited number of people
who meet certain conditions to stay in their
own/family home or to live in a community
home and receive services there instead of living
in a larger facility.
To receive waiver services, an individual must
be eligible for Medicaid, have a developmental
disability, and have a limitation in major life
activities such as self care, learning, mobility,
self-direction, and the capacity to live alone.
Can provide Homemaker/Personal Care, Home
Modifications, Transportation, Respite Care, Social
Work, Home-Delivered Meals, Nutrition Services,
Interpreter Services, Specialized Adaptive
Equipment/Supplies, Supported Employment,
and Day Habilitation. The annual budget for
each individual’s services is based on an
assessment of his/her needs.
Can provide Homemaker/Personal Care, Respite
Care, Transportation Services, Emergency Response
Systems, Specialized Medical Equipment and Home
Modifications, Emergency Assistance, Supported
Employment, and Day Habilitation. This waiver
pays for up to $5,000 per year of Homemaker/
Personal Care services, and has various budgeted
amounts available for the other services.
Anna Harris, age 36, is one of 10 adults with developmental disabilities
who was granted an IO Waiver this year in accordance to a plan to
address our waiting list. This is the first time in recent history the Board
has been able to offer waivers in non-emergency situations to individuals
on the IO Waiver waiting list.
Anna, who has been on the Waiver waiting list since 1996, has severe
mental retardation, seizure disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder and
anxiety. Since the death of Anna’s mother three years ago, her father
has been her primary caregiver, while her sister serves as her guardian.
This July, the IO Waiver will help Anna move into an adult foster care
home operated by Siffrin, Inc., a local provider. For Anna’s father Dan,
sister Chris Bernier, and Esther Dennis, her Stark DD SSA, this means
comfort in knowing that Anna will remain in a smaller home-based
environment, with consistent care. For Anna and her family, this
support is “heaven sent.”
A GLOSSARY OF TERMS
HMG: The Help Me Grow program is administered
by the Ohio Department of Health and offers support
to children who are ‘at-risk’ for a delay, and provides
prenatal and newborn home visits. Early Intervention
is a component of HMG. Visit www.ohiohelpmegrow.org to find a local intake/referral site.
Self-Advocacy: People with developmental
disabilities, either individually or in
groups, speaking or acting on behalf
of themselves, or on behalf of
issues that affect people with
Moving from Segregated to
The Stark County Board of
Developmental Disabilities prides
itself on providing services to over
3,300 Stark County residents with
developmental disabilities. However the impact of our services is
not limited to those residents.
It extends to the other 340,000
residents of the county as well.
We pride ourselves on providing
experiences that encourage those
with disabilities to mesh into our
community knowing that when
people with disabilities are welcomed into local neighborhoods,
workplaces, and schools, everyone
wins. We have extended our reach
into the community by initiating
several new programs.
Collaborating with the Educational Service Center and Plain Local
Schools, we embedded three
classrooms within Plain Local
neighborhood schools. Twenty
preschool and elementary students participated in this pilot program, which
is part of our strategic plan.
Project STIR, sponsored by the
Ohio Self Determination Association (OSDA), stands for Steps
Toward Independence and Responsibility. It is designed to provide
individuals with disabilities the
tools to advocate for themselves
and gain leadership experience.
Project STIR now has five trained
Stark County participants.
Parents have the greatest impact on their child’s learning and are their child’s
most important teachers. That is why the Early Intervention Services provided
at no cost by the Stark County Board of Developmental Disabilities focuses on
teaching families how to foster their child’s development through participation
in routine family activities. Infants who are at risk for a delay are referred for
Early Intervention services through the Help Me Grow program. Early Intervention is just one of the reasons that 90 percent of children enrolled in Board
services are able to return to their home school districts for their education.
During 2011, Stark DD helped more than 250 infants and toddlers in our
community get the early support they needed.
Lucas Ransom began receiving Early Intervention services from the Board
when he was five months old. Born with Pierre Robin Sequence and a cleft
palate, Lucas has also endured encephalitis and spinal meningitis, along
with several other physical challenges. Stark Board staff have worked
with parents Beth and Brent through each stage, helping Lucas meet
This year Stark DD established
a People First program at every
adult service site. People First of
Ohio believes “that all people
with disabilities should be treated
as equals and be able to speak
up for what they want by serving
as leaders and working together
as a team with all members of
the community.” Members held
weekly meetings and participated
in the Annual Hall of Fame
Community Parade last July
in downtown Canton.
Doing the Job
The Stark County Board of
Developmental Disabilities prides
itself on providing services from
infancy onward to more than
3,300 Stark County residents with
mild, moderate, severe, or profound mental retardation or other
developmental disabilities. While
we provide direct services to
more than 3,300 Stark County
residents, our impact is much larger. Our services affect families,
educational institutions and the
local economy. Many residents
may be unaware of our contribution to the county’s economy.
Through our Bridges to Transition,
Supportive Employment Enclave
and Community programs, and
partnerships with the United
Disability Services of Akron and
Coleman Professional Services
of Northeast Ohio, we provide
employment and experience to
more than 380 DD residents
working in more than150 businesses throughout the county.
With these programs and partnerships, Stark DD is able to enrich
the lives of individuals with dis
abilities and serve as a driver of
economic development in the
Bridges to Transition
The Bridges to Transition
program allows students who are
nearing graduation to move into
a work environment and expose
them to the front end requirements
of work. The program features
“coaches” who build relationships
with students and community businesses. These relationships allow
the coaches to find jobs for students based on their interests and
the community’s needs. Exploration is driven by the student.
Sometimes a job coach will take
them to a job site in which they
show an interest, and let them
talk to an employee so they
discover what the job entails.
The program is in its inaugural
year and was composed of 26
students from Stark DD school
programs and the Educational
This program offers a job coach
and a team of individuals with
disabilities who perform work
at companies in the community.
Examples include light manufacturing, cleaning and even document shredding. Currently 160
adults with disabilities work on
crews. These crews work at 45
businesses in the Stark community. Crews typically work a mini-
To continue our initiative to move from segregated to integrated environments, Stark DD strived to develop relationships with business, civic, and
educational partners to further promote community involvement and integration of people with disabilities into the Stark County community.
This year, more than twenty adults with disabilities volunteered almost
600 hours in our community, cleaning up our parks, collecting recyclables
and doing acts of kindness for the elderly. Volunteer sites included the
Humane Society of Stark County, Meals on Wheels and the Akron/Canton
Food Bank. Other times we have partnered with groups, such as Project
Rebuild, on local beautification projects. Students in our school programs
have also given to their community, fundraising for Breast Cancer Awareness and filling holiday gift bags for a local soup kitchen. Wherever they
gave their time, our volunteers were committed to giving back to the community that has given them so much. They ended the day by saying “I
helped someone today!”
mum of four hour shifts daily.
Our most successful enclave
partnership is with the Rubbermaid Company. Since first
hiring an enclave crew more
than 15 years ago, we’ve
now placed 76 people on
eight enclave crews at the
Mogadore plant. Those working on the fast-paced production line have been welcomed
into the Rubbermaid family
and wear their Rubbermaid
shirts with pride.
This program offers a
one-on-one job coach who
assists a person in finding
and keeping a job in the
community. The job coach
assists with hands on training and as the worker progresses in learning their job,
more independence is granted to them.
Currently 120 individuals
with disabilities work at
110 community businesses,
including supermarkets, nursing homes, fast food restaurants and large retail shops.
In addition to our Supported
Employment programs, Stark
DD also entered into partnerships with United Disability
Services of Akron and
Coleman Professional Services of Northeast Ohio.
These partnerships allow
Stark DD to seek work opportunities and training to individuals with severe develop-
mental disabilities or health
issues. Our involvement in
these partnerships not only
allows us to expand work
experience and opportunities,
but also allows us to take
advantage of federal funds.
For every $1 that Stark DD
invests in the program, the
federal government contributes $3.69.
FIND OUT MORE AT
W W W. S TA R K D D . O R G
A GLOSSARY OF TERMS
Supported Employment-Enclave: This program
offers a job coach and a team of persons with
disabilities who perform work at companies in the
community. Examples include light manufacturing,
cleaning and even document shredding.
This program offers a one-on-one job coach who
assists a person in finding and keeping a job in the
community. The job coach will assist with hands-on
training and will fade over time. The employment
services are provided in an integrated community work setting where individuals
with DD and persons without disabilities are employed to perform the
same or similar work tasks.
more than 380 DD
in more than 150
Bridget Taylor, (center) 48, has worked at McKinley Life Care Center in the
housekeeping department for the past 22 years. With the guidance of her
Stark DD Job Coach Steve Sedlock and her supervisor Brenda Donovan,
Bridget works full time, receiving above minimum wage salary, vacation and
overtime benefits, and participates in the company’s 401K plan. Just like
her co-workers, Bridget keeps up on all company requirements including
staff trainings and uniform purchases. Her paychecks also allow her to
continue living at home with her mother and contribute to their expenses.
Bridget is just one of 120 people in the Supported Employment- Community
division working in our community. More than 110 businesses throughout
Stark County have learned that it is a smart business choice to hire people
with disabilities for a job well done. The people we serve want to be
employed by businesses in their community and the Stark County
Board of Developmental Disabilities and The Workshops, Inc.
are making that dream a reality.
B R I D G E T T AY L O R
Eastgate Early Childhood
and Family Center
Service & Support
2121 Ashland St. NE, Louisville, 44641
1278 S. Main St., North Canton, 44720
West Stark Center
7891 Hills & Dales Rd. NE, Massillon, 44646
Just Imagine Gift Shop
2950 Whipple Ave. NW, Canton, 44708
Lester Higgins Adult Center
3041 Cleveland Ave. SW, Canton, 44707
3059 Cleveland Ave. SW, Canton, 44707
15¢ | 55,000 copies
Rebecca Stallman Southgate School
3057 Cleveland Ave. SW, Canton, 44707